Almost all of us will be involved in a car accident at one time or another in our lives.
There are many factors that may cause each individual car accident, some within our
control, and some not. This section explores the causes of car accidents, and the injuries
that most often result. We invite you to browse this informational content and contact us
to discuss the specifics of your case.
What are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents?
Speeding is a contributing factor in almost all accidents. The faster the speed, the greater
the risk of an accident. But, you don’t need to be going 50 miles over the speed limit in
order to endanger yourself and others. On the highway, even 5 miles can make the
difference between being able to respond quickly and effectively when a dangerous
situation pops up, and not being able to stop in time. Speed limits are calculated and
posted for a reason. Keep yourself and others safe by following the speed limit.
Road Rage/Aggressive Driving
Driving is a stressful endeavor requiring focus and concentration. However, most people
bring their lives with them when they get behind the wheel. The normal stresses of
everyday life can combine with the stresses everyone must endure on the road, and when
a driver’s patience is exceeded, road rage and aggressive driving often result.
The National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines
aggressive driving as occurring when “an individual commits a combination of moving
traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.” Examples include speeding,
rapidly changing lanes, or tailgating.
Consider these tips if you think are prone to road rage, or if you encounter other
individuals who are driving aggressively:
- If you tend to get aggressive on the road yourself: relax and try to focus on the
task at hand. The consequences of aggressive driving can be severe, not only for
yourself, but for those with whom you share the road.
- Consider your triggers. On everyone’s usual routes, there are always certain
streets that are high in traffic. If you can’t stay calm during your morning
commute, consider alternate routes so that you do not lose control of your
emotions while in traffic.
- At one time or another, all of us will encounter an aggressive driver on the road.
The best advice is to not engage or react. Allow the driver to pass you, and only
change lanes when you feel it is safe to do so.
When we think of distracted driving today, we think of those people we all have seen
who have their eyes on their cell phone when they should have their eyes on the road.
From texting to status updates, our phones are major distractions on the road. Even
hands-free devices do little to make phone use safer on the roads.
But, distractions can take many forms, and dealing with them often isn’t as easy as
putting the phone down. From fighting kids in the backseat to the navigation screen that
we’ve all tried to follow, sometimes the very things that were designed to be helpful can
turn into dangerous distractions.
Anything that takes your mental focus away from the road is a dangerous distraction.
Distracted driving is as dangerous as drinking and driving, so every time you get behind
the wheel, consider first whether you are prepared to focus squarely on the road. Your
safety and the safety of your fellow drivers is at stake.
Driving Under the Influence
Despite years of bringing the problem of drinking and driving to the public’s awareness,
it is still a major problem in our society. Even one drink slows a driver’s reaction time
and affects his ability to focus. Several drinks will amplify this effect even further,
putting everyone you encounter on the road at risk.
In the state of Texas, every 20 minutes someone is hurt of killed in a crash involving
alcohol. The most dangerous times for drinking and driving are nights and weekends,
summer months and holidays. It doesn’t take much for a person to be legally intoxicated,
so before you even begin drinking, decide how you will get where you are going.
One of the most frightening things about getting behind the wheel of a car is that even if
you do everything right, accidents can still occur. Often the vehicle itself is to blame.
Steering can lock, brakes can give way, tires can blow out, and accelerators can stick.
This is why it is critical that your focus be on the task at hand whenever you are driving.
Uncontrollable occurrences like these require instant reactions.
Texas is notorious for its unpredictable weather. From rain and snow to fog and hail,
inclement weather conditions can appear and disappear in a flash. With our heavy
reliance on cars, almost all of us are affected by the weather. Combined with other
conditions such as bad roads and aggressive drivers, you can literally end up in the
perfect storm. Avoiding accidents can be as simple as leaving extra room between your
car and others, and slowing down. If possible, waiting until conditions improve can
avoid problems altogether.
Poorly Maintained Roads
Another factor that is out of the individual driver’s hands is the state of the road itself.
Each city and state has the responsibility to maintain its streets and highways, and there is
plenty to do in this regard. Potholes need to be filled, cracks need to be fixed, roads
needs to be resurfaced, and signs need to be current. Be aware of the roads you frequent.
Knowing the condition of the road helps you anticipate and avoid any problems that may
Contact the Car Accident Lawyers at Kirkendall Dwyer LLP
No matter what the cause of your car accident, you are likely suffering financially, physically, and emotionally. We invite you to use our side menu to browse through the various topics we have on car accidents. After doing so, we hope you will contact us for a free consultation. While searching “car accident lawyers Houston” you have questions; we have the answers that will help you begin the process of recovery. Fill out a form or call us toll-free today.